Beyond the Big Help Out: How to Recruit Your Volunteer Dream Team with a Solid Plan for Action

Thursday 6 June 2024 | 9.30am to 4.30pm | Manchester Metropolitan University

Ticket prices (inc lunch): Members £89 | Non-members £109

We are excited to announce a unique, in-person event with Tobi Johnson who is an internationally sought-after consultant and expert trainer in volunteer engagement.

The aim of the day is to help attendees learn the essential skills and frameworks that are needed to expand and deepen volunteer impact using today’s tools and strategies.

If your organisation is ready to grow and diversify your volunteer talent, now is the time to get a concrete plan in place to build your dream team.

In this full-day immersive workshop, you will learn a clear, step-by-step process to assess your needs and set a course for purposeful growth that is realistic and achievable in the current environment.

How do you build a team of committed volunteers that support your agency’s most pressing needs?
How do you attract today’s busy volunteers of all ages with today’s tools?
How do you onboard volunteers so you don’t lose valuable talent right at the door?

We’ll answer these questions and more.

In addition to learning step-by-step frameworks through live instruction, you will translate learning into action through peer-to-peer discussion and sharing. You’ll leave with solid next steps, ready to launch a volunteer involvement strategy that
gets results.

Come and learn from a trainer with deep experience in digital marketing and volunteer engagement and a fresh, modern set of strategies for today’s leaders of volunteers. Volunteers are vital assets to your association’s sustainability, and if they are engaged in the right way everyone wins!



Session 1 – Plan for Strategic Volunteer Involvement

  • Assess your current strategy and address fixed mindsets that may be barriers to your success
  • Use a 5-step plan to attract volunteers and build momentum for service
  • Pinpoint your ideal volunteers so you can speak to their greatest needs & desires
  • Discussion Breakout – Pinpoint Your Ideal Volunteer Persona 


Session 2 – Convert Committed Volunteers with Better Messaging

  • Craft an uber-compelling case for joining your team using one simple formula
  • Use volunteer objections to strengthen (not weaken) your calls to action
  • Use social proof, FOMO, and storytelling to build momentum to join
  • Discussion Breakout – Build a Heart-Centered Volunteer Appeal that Stands Out

Networking lunch

Session 3 – Implement a “Full Stack” Volunteer Recruitment Strategy

  • Build a high-converting volunteer-friendly web page that drives action and builds a following
  • Design time-saving email campaigns to build relationships while you sleep
  • Tap social media to grab the attention and meet volunteers where they’re at (even older volunteers!)
  • Employ intentional “Tell-a-Friend” campaigns to boost word-of-mouth marketing results
  • Discussion Breakout – Choose a Mix of Channels to Reach Your Ideal Volunteer Persona 


Session 4 – Onboard Volunteers with Intention and Purpose

  • Use inclusive leadership tactics to build a deeper sense of community and connection with diverse volunteers
  • Map out an onboarding plan cultivates enthusiasm, commitment, and better follow through
  • Discussion Breakout – Plan to Welcome Volunteers from All Walks of Life

Wrap up

  • Q&A
  • Key takeaways
  • Next steps

(This agenda may be subject to change)

Video: Introducing Beyond The Big Help Out – How to Recruit Your Volunteer Dream Team with a Solid Plan for Action

Video: Volunteer recruitment messaging

Video: Targeting your marketing

Video: Full stack recruitment

Video: Volunteer onboarding

About the speaker

Tobi Johnson is an internationally sought-after expert, consultant, and expert trainer in volunteer engagement. She is known for her modern thought leadership, highly practical evidence-based strategies, and innovative, “big hat” thinking around engaging, supporting, and acknowledging the work of volunteers.

She is the President of Tobi Johnson & Associates, a consulting firm whose mission is to help nonprofit organizations make connections with remarkable volunteers. In 2015, she founded VolunteerPro, an online training and networking community for leaders of volunteers. She is host of the Volunteer Nation Podcast and co-host of the Time + Talent Podcast with Jennifer Bennett of VolunteerMatch. In addition, she wrote Chapter 1 of Volunteer Engagement 2.0: Ideas and Insights for Transforming Volunteer Programs in a Changing World, published by Jossey-Bass. She is currently at work on a book on volunteer leadership.

Tobi has over 30 years boots-on-the-ground experience in nonprofit management, program development and start up, team leadership, training design and delivery and change management across a wide range of cause impact areas from arts and culture, youth development, employment and training, senior services, healthcare advocacy, homelessness, and more.

She has built and led several successful local and state direct service and advocacy programs from the ground up and has worked in – and with – private charities, advocacy organizations, and state and federal agencies. She is familiar with traditional volunteerism, association management, and grassroots organizing strategies.

In addition, Tobi is intimately knowledgeable about the needs of today’s leaders of volunteers. She was the Chair for the Certified in Volunteer Administration (CVA) Job Analysis Task Force; responsible for updating the required the competencies for the fields only internationally recognized credential. Each year, her firm also conducts the Volunteer Management Progress Report, a global state-of-the-industry survey. In 2022, over 1,400 professionals from 28 countries participated.

A native of the Pacific Northwest, Tobi is a graduate of the University of Washington and has a master’s degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She, her husband, and her feline office assistant, Bailey now split their time between East Tennessee and the Pacific Northwest.

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This event is being hosted by AVM, sponsored by TeamKinetic and supported by Manchester Metropolitan University.


TeamKinetic logo


AVM members’ discount

AVM members are eligible for a discount on the event ticket price. Please log in to your account so that your discount can be automatically applied.

If you’re not an AVM member, you can join AVM today to gain access to this event, as well as receiving lots of other benefits, including access to free member-only events, discounts for all public events and the annual AVM conference. You will also have access to the AVM BiteSize webcasts and AVM Replay videos of previous events, including our annual conference. Members also have the opportunity to join our Mentoring Scheme and build their professional network through AVM Connect.

Join AVM today to access your discount on this event.


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June 6
9:30 am - 4:30 pm
£69.00 – £109.00
Event Categories:




Manchester Metropolitan University
Business School, All Saints Campus, Oxford Road
Manchester, M15 6BH United Kingdom
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